On forums, comments and neurosis
Forums are said by some to be a thing of the past. An archaeological finding. If this is true, it will fit my self image as a nostalgic – I like forums. Practical, helpful, slow forums. I’m not sure I like to participate in forums. I can’t for the life of me understand how people get overly involved and participate in every discussion. But I do like to read them. I like the fact that you can search a question, a useful question (unlike the questions you will find in a FAQ) and actually find someone that asked the question and ten other people who bothered to help. For no reason at all, or so it seemed to me, they just help, share, contribute. Such are the mysteries of the web.
If it wasn’t for the recent, self-centered search for site promotion – I would probably continue to exhibit my unrestraint passivity in forums and just read away. But as you can imagine, I read somewhere that making a comment in forums actually does magic for your own site promotion. You can have a small signature with your website address, and then every time you make a stupid comment – another link is magically created and your search engine status is improved by an unnoticeable, completely insignificant amount. You’d probably have to comment in a million forums to actually become webfamous, but hey this is what super cool web geeks do.
So completely for the wrong motives, with nothing but self interest in mind I went and searched for a forum to attack. I found one. I found the discussion that will be my pray. I made a comment and for hours (actually a minute, but I needed the dramatic note here) my mouse hovered above the send button where shame and greed fought each other.
Do you know that your comment will stay there forever? For the rest of the web history, eternity… Do you know that anyone that will ever search your name in Google will find the stupid egoistic remark? Actual people, that might know you… And… I couldn’t press it.
I didn’t give up, I just continued to search for a better discussion where I could actually made a contribution, and then I did post a reply. Sincere apologies for the sticky anti-climax.
After the first reply, everything was easier. I could go back to my original intentions and post replies. I could even start actual discussions and all out of pure self-interest while feeling no shame.